8th Class, 2015-2017
Policy Placement: ACDI/VOCA; Washington, DC
Based in the DC headquarters office, Michael was a full time member of the Technical Learning and Application division at ACDI/VOCA. After implementing a pilot of new tools in his field year in Ghana, Michael applied this experience to adapting manuals so that they could be used by other projects which were already underway. These tools enable projects to design activities that will enable the adoption of technical agricultural practices. Throughout the year, Michael provided technical support to projects in implementing these new manuals and in barrier analysis. In addition, Michael continued to advance the integration of social and behavior change into ACDI/VOCA’s overall technical strategy.
Field Placement: ACDI/VOCA; Tamale, Ghana
Based in Tamale, Ghana, Michael worked with the field team on the ADVANCE II project, which promotes better production and harvesting techniques among smallholder farmers in Northern Ghana involved in rice, maize, and soy value chains. Michael conducted a review of current training materials used by the ADVANCE II field staff in order to improve farmer trainings. In addition, he documented the technical practices taught by the field staff. Michael also implemented a barrier analysis to determine the factors influencing farmer adoption rates of ADVANCE II technical practices.
Education and Experience:
Michael Wilcox began working in agriculture development as a Peace Corps volunteer in coastal Ecuador. He earned an MA in Sustainable International Development at Brandeis University, completing a professional practicum in Nicaragua that focused on the socio-economic impacts of environmental conservation. Michael also served as a Peace Corps Response volunteer in Guatemala, working with the rural cooperative APRODEFI on value chain assessments and farmer training. Most recently, Michael was involved in city & regional planning in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio where he assisted in the formation of a regional food network. Michael holds a BA in International Relations & Political Science from The Ohio State University.